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Histoire(s) du cinéma: Une vague nouvelle (1998)

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experimental film | essay | See All (2) »

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1998 (France)  »

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Historia/e kina: Nowa fala  »

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"An audio-visual poem..."
24 February 2011 | by (Norway) – See all my reviews

This French-Swiss production by the French-Swiss avant-garde filmmaker who broke most cinematic conventions, invented a new film language and who became one of the French New Wave's most influential directors after working several years as a film critic in Gazette du Cinéma which he co-founded with La Nouvelle Vague filmmakers Francois Truffaut and Jacques Rivette in 1950 and in André Bazin's 1951 French film magazine Cahiers du Cinéma, provides an insightful, critical, political, uncanny, dark, colorful and subjective look at the story of Cinema, the history of Cinema, the histories of Cinema and the stories of Cinema, spanning from its birth and towards the 20th Century. With classical background music from amongst others Ludwig van Beethoven, Igor Stravinsky, Franz Schubert, Johann Sebastian Bach, himself as the main narrator, actresses like Julie Delphy and Juliette Binoche as narrators, voice recordings of other directors and artists and through eight fast-paced episodes, Jean-Luc Godard conveys a diverse, picturesque, abstract, unsettling and explicit montage of paintings, images, sounds and movie scenes.

This extensive autobiographical production which began the year after Jean-Luc Godard had finished his 27th feature film "Soigne ta droite" (1987) is as much an analytical, existentialistic, surreal and lyrical homage to individual art as a far-reaching and universal memoir of Cinema history seen from the subjective point of view of the director, screenwriter, cinematographer, producer, film editor and earlier film critic who made his directorial debut with the ground-breaking "Breathless" in 1960. This close to four and a half hour journey with one of the world's greatest living directors is like watching a documentary, a drama, a thriller, a film-noir, a horror film, an erotic film, an action film, a comedy, an experimental film and an audio-visual poem at the same time. Jean-Luc Godard's directing and editing is salient, Hervé Duhamel and Pierre Binggeli's cinematography is varied and the exercise of narrative in this epic work of art is profound.


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